McConnell: Democrats Using Cloture Votes to Embarrass GOP

Wednesday, 14 Mar 2012 04:32 PM

By Dan Weil

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell ripped Democrats Wednesday after the party threatened to hold 17 cloture votes on district court judge nominations. A cloture vote would cut off debate and force a vote on the nominations.

Democrats are just trying to make Republicans look bad, as if they’re blocking President Barack Obama’s judicial choices, McConnell said, according to The Hill.

"This is about giving the president what he wants when he wants it," McConnell said on the Senate floor. "And what the president wants is to distract the country from his failed policies that have led to soaring gas prices and high unemployment, and instead try to write a narrative of obstruction for his campaign. He doesn't care if he eviscerates the Senate's advice-and-consent responsibility to do so."

McConnell’s comments came after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the Senate may conduct up to 17 cloture votes on district court judge nominations, unless the two parties can come to another agreement. Republicans say there’s no need for the votes, given that these are non-controversial appointments who have broad support.

McConnell and other Republicans say they haven’t blocked court appointments, with the minority leader noting that more lower-court judges have been approved in Obama’s first three years — 129 — than in either of President George W. Bush’s four-year terms.


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